HEART AS A BARGAINING CHIP: STORY OF A SMALL-TOWN GIRL
Silly little lifespan only good for growing old. Record the facts,
she says: We swam the Thames. I am the only one to do it—girl
of thirty, flirting with the cabbie, say he looked like Goya, ate
me out beside the entrance of a Marks & Spencer, bobble−headed
Hawaiian eying from the dash.
I was a teacher for a week—boys of thirteen diddling on while
I talked dirty about colonial history. Had enough? I grew up in a
weathered prom dress circa ’86, spent half a lifetime growing tits.
Sleeves are soaked in heart, sleeps are ever−wrapped in wanting
never to wake up. My sponsor is a monster.
Yoga course in Goa just to be; I had forgotten how to breathe.
These maps for hands, how many lines it takes to make my
psychic aunt insist I’ll live forever. Several thousand sleeps from
being human, chatting with a pint of amber. But I’m blond, I say.
Swear I’ll never suck that pint, that man again.
My gin is sleepy, says it needs to dance for money. I make big
boys buckle in the black light of a haunted hole, this blemished
stretch of Yonge Street. Fact: I am the kindest face to kick The
Canterbury Tales off your table. Don’t want to be your muse but
if I must, just know the record’s never real.
From Knife-Throwing Through Self-Hypnosis (ECW Press, 2013) by Robin Richardson
(Illustration by Caro To)